That’s right, a total of 20 fledging artistes will perform their original music from a myriad of Caribbean genres including Reggae, Dancehall, Pop, Soca, Afro Beats, Neo Soul Beats as well as Caribbean fusion for the second annual staging of the Caribbean Rhythm Showcase.
These 20 acts come from more than 250 submissions in the preliminary round and represent 13 countries in total. The diverse talent has roots in Antigua & Barbuda, The Bahamas, Barbados, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, St Vincent and the Grenadines, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, and Trinidad and Tobago.
The Caribbean Export Development Agency (Caribbean Export) in cooperation with the European Union introduced the noteworthy platform for performing artistes across the region to demonstrate their uniqueness and creativity virtually, whereby they would be exposed to professionals within the music industry in anticipation of developing their careers to a global standard.
Those who are part of the final selection have now been invited to participate in an innovative and eclectic showcase to be staged in Kingston, Jamaica on Sunday, September 18, in front of a live audience consisting of international producers, label representatives and other talent buyers.
The Caribbean Rhythm Showcase will be livestreamed on YouTube. Immediately following the live Showcase, registered industry executives have the opportunity to directly interact with the artistes via Zoom.
“The cultural and creative industries are important sectors for the region. Our orange economy has the potential to contribute significantly to the transformation of the Caribbean if we leverage the opportunities presented through digitalisation” shared Allyson Francis, Services Specialist at Caribbean Export.
This year’s dynamic judging panel is comprised of Mikey Dread from Barbados, DJ Umba from Trinidad and Tobago, Luke Boyea from St Vincent and the Grenadines, Henry Luc of Haiti and a trio of Jamaicans including Steve Locke, Collin Hines and Mikie Bennett supported by CEDA and Headline Entertainment representatives.
“The Caribbean Rhythm Showcase team is on a mission to put talent on display, have them gain pragmatic exposure and create a wide range of opportunities for them to engage and collaborate with other regional musicians which will by way of the platform generate international interest in our region’s greatest product – our creative people,” says Jerome Hamilton, Managing Director of Headline Entertainment.
“Last year, the biggest highlight for me was definitely the presentation put on by a number of artistes and us being able to bring all the talents with varied backgrounds under one banner. It created a great kaleidoscope of some of the talent across the Caribbean,” he added.
In addition to having an opportunity to travel to the proclaimed ‘Music Capital of the Caribbean’ the individuals selected are expected to participate in a whirlwind of activities prior to the live showcase, engage with various members of the music industry, and will undergo gruelling rehearsals with the internationally acclaimed Skool Band in preparation for their performances.
In partnership with the Jamaica Tourist Board, the Ministry of Gender, Culture, Entertainment and Sports, JAMPO and other partners, the visitors will tour local attractions, participate in industry talks and attend Kingston-based events.